Seiko dive watches are among the best selling timepieces thanks to their high quality along with their competitive prices.
They are durable watches with solid finishes. Their diving function is reassured by the ISO 6425 – certification. The LumiBrite technology really exceeds users’ expectations in terms of legibility. All of these characteristics make Seiko dive watches ideal choices for buyers with a limited budget.
Here is my list of the 6 best Seiko dive watches for men that offer great quality with affordable prices. I hope this will be of good use to you in searching for your personal suitable diving piece!
My Picks of the Best Seiko Dive Watches
|SEIKO SKX007K2 AUTOMATIC||9/10||40mm||7S26 Seiko Automatic||Read Review|
|SEIKO ORANGE MONSTER SRP309 AUTOMATIC||8/10||43mm||4R36 Seiko Automatic||Read Review|
|SEIKO MEN’S SSC017 SOLAR POWERED CHRONOGRAPH||9/10||44mm||V175 Seiko Solar-Powered Quartz||Read Review|
|SEIKO SKX173 AUTOMATIC||9/10||40mm||7S26 Seiko Automatic||Read Review|
|SEIKO SKA371 KINETIC||7/10||42mm||5M62 Seiko Kinetic||Read Review|
|SEIKO SNE107 SOLAR-POWERED||8/10||42mm||V158 Seiko Solar-Powered Quartz||Read Review|
- Appealing classic design
- Versatile Design – Although it’s not as dressy as other counterparts like the Orient Mako, it’s still suitable with formal outfits
- Has a solid feel
- Some customers might not like the crown to be placed at 4 o’clock
- The jubilee bracelet is good-looking, but not as solid as the case (but it’s easy to find a replacement band)
This is Seiko’s most popular dive watch that has been sought after for many years. It features a matte black dial which is perfectly sized at 40mm to fit a wide range of men’s wrists.
Despite being an entry-level dive watch, the SKX007’s durability and dependability is not inferior to many other timepieces that cost you over 500$. Its 7S26 caliber is a prestigious automatic movement which is really a workhorse.
The SKX007K2 has earned a spot in a range of men’s watches thanks to its unique design that exudes the unique Seiko DNA. Though this is not a dress watch, it can fit well with both casual and formal apparel.
In case you don’t like the SKX007K2’s 22mm jubilee bracelet, you can opt for the SKX007K version with a ribbed rubber strap.
Since dark blue is the most common color on dive watches, Seiko added 2 pepsi (dark blue with a red portion) bezel versions to their SKX series, they are the SKX009K1 (rubber strap) & the SKX009K2 (stainless steel bracelet).
- Extremely solid feel with high quality stainless steel body
- Appealing silver tone
- Cool sporty look and design
- Not suitable with formal outfits
- The bezel accumulates dirt over time so you have to clean it on a monthly basis
The SRP309 is literally an armored watch. All of the watch body is made of stainless steel going from the case, to the bezel, and up to its bracelet. The dial is simultaneously a classic look and sporty in design.
This watch is not designed to be a fashion item. It’s a downright dive watch. Due to this, choosing an outfit to mix with the timepiece can be quite a chore. It’s not as easy as the SKX007 above.
It’s also worth noting that the SRP309 is called “Orange Monster Generation 2”, because it is actually an upgraded version of the Seiko Monster SKX781.
While there are only some minor changes in design between the 2 generations, the SRP309 actually got a significant improvement in terms of mechanical functions, thanks to its new caliber – the 4R36.
The Monster used to feature the same 7S26 movement with the SKX007, that’s why it was named SKX781. However, Seiko wanted to separate them into 2 distinct product lines as their target markets are totally different.
The SKX007 is easier to use for casual & formal wear. The SRP309, on the other hand, is an absolute sport watch with an extremely rugged look. This is why it’s called “Monster” rather than any other lovely name.
The 24 – jewel 4R36 caliber has many valuable upgrades compared to the 21 – jewel 7S26: more accurate, hackable, hand-winding. Sounds interesting? Yeah, and the price is upgraded too. The SRPs are more expensive than the SKXs due to these technical renewals. But it is worthwhile, isn’t it?
- Solar powered – No battery change is needed
- Complements most outfits
- 3 sub-dials & 2 push-buttons add coolness to the chronograph watch
- Nice mixture of black, white & blue
- Hard to push buttons
By purchasing the SSC017, you possess 2 of Seiko’s best innovative technologies at the same time. The first is the glowing & long-lasting LumiBrite lume as mentioned above. The second is the solar-powered chronograph quartz movement.
The SSC017 is not a classical automatic watch like the SKX007 & SRP309. It is a quartz timepiece with modern features. Needless to say on its accuracy, the solar-powered V175 caliber is known to run off just about a few seconds per month.
Their solar movements can operate up to 6 months after being fully charged by a strong light source with no battery change needed.
The watch features 3 subdials like other typical chronograph watches: the 24-hour dial on the right, the second displaying dial on the left, and the minute totalizer at the center.
As this is a chronograph timepiece, there is a screw-down crown and 2 push-buttons on the middle case’s right side which gives the sporty look to the watch.
The SSC017 is the dressiest dive watch in the list. It suits well with almost any kind of clothes except for extremely formal apparel. The SSC017 also has a wide range of variations with different colors and band materials, each one looking great in their own style.
- Appealing classic design
- Solid feel
- Some customers might not like the crown to be placed at 4 o’clock
- The urethane strap is just so-so
At first I didn’t intend to add this piece to the list, because it’s actually the SKX007 in another dress.
Yeah, these Seiko automatic diver’s watches share a lot of similarities. The movement inside this SKX173 is also the caliber 7S26. Technically you might say that they are the same watch. However, the SKX173 has a few changes in style that make it look different to its cousin.
Not everyone likes the circle-dot hour markers on the SKX007. Seiko knows that, so they made the SKX173 with square markers to help diversify your options. The dial really looks sharper with this style.
The lumed dot on the sweep hand also changes its position to the opposite.
How about the polyurethane strap? To be honest, it’s not perfectly made, but still acceptable. You can feel it’s not as elastic and comfortable as natural rubber, but it’s tough and difficult to crack.
For me, though, it is alright as it only costs about $200 and certainly won’t be able to give all the things I wish for.
Preferably, I just need a solid case, a reliable movement, and it’s good to go. For the band, I can always find an aftermarket replacement easily. I can then customize it to the way I want as there are a lot of options with different styles & materials (metal, textile, calfskin, alligator…).
In brief, if you want an affordable automatic dive watch with a reliable self-winding movement and solid finish, then the SKX173 is the right choice. It’s not excellent in every aspect, but it offers you high value compared to what it costs. SKX173 is one of the best Seiko watches in the market now!
- Solid feel
- Versatile design – can go with formal outfits
- Kinetic caliber – It’s an interesting combination of traditional mechanical and quartz movements
- A little thicker than normal
- Looks bigger than its actual dial diameter
The SKA371 is priced a little bit higher than other watches in this list because it is a kinetic watch. Kinetic movement is an interesting combination of quartz and traditional mechanical movements. In essence, it is a quartz mechanism. But its battery gains power from your arm’s movement.
A kinetic watch gets the best of both worlds: high accuracy & no need of battery replacement every 2 – 3 years. But due to the complicated caliber inside, this type of watch tends to be thicker than ordinary mechanical watches. The Seiko SKA371 is not an exception. Its case thickness is 15mm, while that of the SKX007 is just 13mm.
This watch is not big when it comes to case diameter with just 42mm. However, the 4 big lugs make the overall measurement much larger. So I don’t recommend this watch for people who have small wrists as it may look overbearing.
The slightly- beveled bezel and triple-row link bracelet are similar to those of the SSC017 above, and looks very nice. I have no complaints on these parts.
Beating inside this timepiece is the kinetic caliber 5M62 with “power reserve indicator” function. You’ll notice that there is a pusher occupying the 2 o’clock position. It is only used for this function. You can read in detail here!
When you see the second hand moving in 2-sec intervals, your watch will stop running the next day due to lack of energy. But I think this rarely happens because usually the watch can function well within 6 months after a full charge. It’s so amazing!
A traditional mechanical watch requires you to wear it at least every other day to keep it running, because its power reserve is only around 48 hours. But for the SKA371, you just need to wear it through one single day to get enough power for your watch in the next 6 months. That’s what I love most about this watch.
The SKA371 also excels in function: high accuracy, 6-month power reserve, quick charging, and the most interesting, is its way to get power through your arm’s movement. It is just like a classic auto watch. However, it is quite large and thick. Don’t opt for it if you have small wrists, there are other good options in this list for you!
- Appealing silver tone, with brushed & polished details
- Solar powered – No battery change is needed
- Looks a little smaller than its actual size
- The triple-row bracelet is just so-so
If you love a silver tone, this watch may be the ideal choice for you! It is stainless steel from A to Z. A great combination of a tool watch & dress watch! It doesn’t look as rugged as the Seiko Monster, but it still gives you an extremely solid feel.
What I like most about the SNE107 is its unidirectional bezel. It is not painted, but that it’s brushed silver surface blends in very well with the rest of the watch.
Normally, a bezel is rather coin-edged or scalloped, but with the SNE107, you can get both. This design not only makes the bezel extremely easy to grip and turn, but also gives it an aesthetically distinct look.
The black dial contrasts very well with stack-white luminous hands & markers. And you know what? The background is not matte. It has a very nice-looking sunburst pattern. To me it is a big plus because I love my watch to be radiant under the sunshine!
The brushed metal bracelet has 2 polished lines running along. I like this style, because the lines add some focal points to the bracelet, making it not too monotonous.
The SNE107 features the solar-powered caliber V158 which keeps good time, as it only runs off about 15 secs/month. After a full charge, the timepiece can operate in the next 10 months, so you won’t need to wear it on a daily basis.
Sized at 42mm, the Seiko SNE107 is appropriate for a wide range of wrist types. As I’ve just mentioned, it is a perfect combination of a tool watch & dress watch. However, this piece is not meant for formal occasions. It looks better for outdoor activities, diving, or everyday use.
I think it looks best on a stainless steel bracelet, but you can certainly replace the stock metal band with a rubber or leather strap if you want a change in style!
Why did Seiko dive watches become one of the best choices out there? To make it clear, we should take a look at this company’s timeline to know about their achievements & where their admirable craftsmanship comes from!
A Brief History of Seiko – The No.1 Watchmaker In Japan
Seiko began its journey in 1881 when a young entrepreneur named Kintaro Hattori started the watch and jewelry shop K. Hattori in Ginza at the center of Tokyo. From then up until now, three generations of the Hattori family have dedicated to perfection what Kintaro was always aiming for.
After eleven years since the shop was established, Kintaro started a factory and produced clocks with the name Seiko-sha, which meant “House of exquisite workmanship”. According to Seiko’s official website, Seiko is a Japanese word which means “exquisite” or “success”.
The 1890s saw the success of this new company in the line of wall clocks so Kintaro decided to expand his product range. In 1895, he created the first pocket watch which marked a milestone in the history of not just this brand, but also to the entire Japanese wrist watch industry.
Here is a short video about Seiko Museum – Tokyo, established in 1981
SEIKOSHA’S FIRST WATCH (1913)
Produced in 1913, Laurel was the result of Kintaro’s determination and extreme hard work. It is also the first wristwatch of Japan which paved the way for a new era of watchmaking in this country. This particular timepiece had a silver case with the diameter of 2.6 mm and a porcelain enamel dial.
FIRST WATCH UNDER THE NAME SEIKO (1924)
This is believed to be the first watch under the official name Seiko made in 1924. With this Japanese name, you can see Kintaro’s ambition, hope and confidence in his watch because at that time, people held a strong belief that Western products were of superior quality.
FIRST GRAND SEIKO (1960)
Seiko launched this watch as its signature piece, making it the most accurate and precise watch in the world. It is a mechanical watch with the Caliber 3180, measured 12 lignes (1 ligne = 2.2558mm) and had 25 jewels with a frequency of 18,000 vph. Each grand Seiko watch was certified with an original standard from Seiko. It is notable that today, this standard is even stricter than the Swiss agency COSC’s standard for certifying chronometers.
They created the first portable quartz chronometer in the world, QC- 951.
Awarded the “best mechanical wrist chronometer” in the Geneva competition
On Christmas, Seiko introduced the world’s first quartz watch, Seiko Astron. It is considered as one of the watches that changed the history of the industry. Although there had been a quartz wristwatch prototype in Switzerland, Astron is the manifestation of the new trend of manufacturing quartz wristwatches.
Seiko released the world’s first six-digit LCD quartz watch, the Seiko Quartz LC V.F.A. 06LC
Seiko introduced the world’s first digital quartz watch with a chronograph, the 0634. In this year, the timepiece maker also launched the world’s first dive watch with a titanium case. This dive watch was inspired by a professional diver’s letter from Hiroshima Prefecture in 1968. The letter told the engineers about the stress and strains which a watch has to face underwater. After 7 years of thorough research, they released the Professional Diver’s 600m.
FIRST STEPS IN MAKING A HIGH-TECH WATCH
It is quite surprising that neither Apple nor Samsung made the first steps in creating high-tech watches but Seiko. In 1983, they made the world’s first TV watch, T001, and then the world’s first watch recorder, the M516, and after one year, the first watch with computer functions, the UC 2000.
Seiko succeeded in making the first computerized dive watch, the ScubaMaster M726.
Seiko is a reputable brand when it comes to low-price but high-quality watches. All of the pieces mentioned above hold the unique styling and five-star movements of Seiko. The craftsmanship of Japanese watchmakers is well-known all over the world so it comes as a reassurance of quality.
This list of the best Seiko dive watches is aimed to help you choose the right one which will suit your personal needs having high quality technology and an inexpensive price tag.